Cornhuskers expect to have Berringer back under center

(c) Copyright the News & Observer Publishing Co. and The Associated Press, 1994

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- Quarterback Brook Berringer should have full medical clearance and be able to use the entire playbook Saturday when the third-ranked Cornhuskers play at Missouri, coach Tom Osborne said Tuesday.

Berringer played the second half in Nebraska's 17-6 victory at Kansas State last week. He was 2-for-7 for 37 yards, and was limited by a flak jacket and orders from Osborne to protect a partially collapsed lung suffered in the Oct. 1 win over Wyoming and re-injured in the Oct. 8 win over Oklahoma State.

"Going into last week's (Kansas State) game was the most difficult I've ever seen," Osborne said. "Brook was a question mark, (third-string quarterback) Matt Turman had a bad shoulder. But, I think we're better off now."

Starting quarterback Tommie Frazier is expected to miss the rest of the season to recover from blood clot problems in his right leg.

Nebraska (7-0, 2-0 Big Eight) faces what Osborne calls an improving Tigers team. Missouri (2-4, 1-1) broke an 11-game Big Eight road losing streak last week with a 24-15 win over Oklahoma State.

"They played well last week. Quarterback Jeff Handy is a really good quarterback," Osborne said. "This team is definitely better than they were five or six weeks ago."

Osborne said he's still confused by this week's AP poll, which dropped Nebraska a spot to No. 3 despite Saturday's victory.

"I think it's perception and commentary, some teams are called hot and are talked up nationally," he said. "After we won one football game we were hot, before Tommie Frazier was hurt. We probably got more (hype) than we deserved."

But, he said he's not bothered by the talk.

"I honestly am engrossed right now in playing well at Missouri. I won't worry about something I can't control," he said.